NA FIANNA 1-20 ST VINCENT'S 1-15
Na Fianna held off a battling St Vincent's in Saturday's high quality Dublin MHC 'A' final at Parnell Park to continue their recent rich vein at this grade by completing a three in-a-row.
The St Mobhi Road side led by 1-15 to 0-9 after 43 mintues but Vinnies came with a scoring burst to push Na Fianna all the way to the finishing line.
A Seán Lambe point for the Marino side was following by a Conor Burke free and after Colin Currie had replied with a Na Fianna pointed free Vincent's were soon right back in the game when goalkeeper Daire Perry blasted to the net from a 20-metre free.
Conor Burke added a free and with eight minutes remaining their was only four points separating the sides, 1-16 to 1-12.
Vincent's almost struck for a second goal but Mark O'Keefe's effort flew narrowly wide.
Colin Currie steadied Na Fianna with a point following good work from the industrious Seafra Fitzgerald but Vinnies rallied again with three Burke scores (two frees) to leave just two points between these rivals with two minutes of normal time remaining.
However, it was Na Fianna who closed out the game in impressive fashion with sub Eoin O'Dea, the classy Donal Burke and Colin Currie all on target to seal the deal for Declan Feeney's side.
In the opening half it was Vincent's who initially held the upperhand and opened up a 0-4 to 0-1 advantage by the eight minute.
But as the half wore on Donal Burke, Donal Ryan and Fitzgerald around the middle of the park began to drive their side on and they finished the half impressively with scores from Colin Currie (three, one free from 70 metres), Neil Loftus following good defence by Conor Kelly, Seán Currie and Seafra Fitzgerald were all on the scoresheet to lead 0-12 to 0-6 at the break.
Na Fianna had a golden opportunity to stretch their lead on the restart but Colin Currie failed to convert a penalty in the 32nd minute.
But a minute later Cathal Caverly was in the right spot at the right time to finished a rebound from a Seán Currie effort to the net.
When Seán Currie angled over fine effort from the terrace side in the 37th minute Na Fianna were 1-13 to 0-6 clear.
But Vincent's did not surrender and raised their game significantly to get back in contention before Na Fianna found the scoring touch in the dying minutes to secure victory with captain Peter Feeney leading them home in style.
SCORERS - Na Fianna: C Currie 0-10 (0-5f), D Burke 0-3, C Caverly 1-0, S Fitzgerald, S Currie 0-2 each, J Tierney, N Loftus, E O’Dea 0-1 each. St Vincent’s: C Burke 0-11 (0-9f), S Lambe 0-3, D Perry 1-0 (free), J O’Donnell 0-1.
NA FIANNA: C McHugh; D Bergin, D Ryan, C Kelly; D McHugh, P Feeney, C Berrigan; S Fitzgerald, D Burke; N Loftus, J Tierney, D Lacey; S Currie, C Caverly, C Currie. Subs: M Murphy for Lacey (47), E O’Dea for Caverly (47).
ST VINCENT’S: D Perry; J Collins, C Ryan, M O’Keeffe; E Mac Domhnaill, D Ryan, K Morgan; C Langan, J Walsh; E O’Neill, L Murphy, C Burke; M Sweeny, J O’Donnell, S Lambe. Subs: H Brady for O’Donnell (41), D Maloney for Sweeney (58).
REF: C Mooney (St Pat’s, Palmerstown).